I was idly flicking through the recent transactions on my bank account the other night when I saw a few items I didn't recognise. It seemed that I'd been to Tesco four times over the previous 2 days and had spent around £60 on each occasion. Since I haven't actually stepped foot inside any Tesco store for about a year, this was clearly wrong.
I then realised that in fact someone had managed to clone my card and was spending my money! The fact that it was my debit card and therefore taking money directly out of my current account meant that, unlike a credit card where there's a few weeks delay where you can sort these things out, the money had already gone from my account!
Naturally I called my bank and told them what happened. In fact, they were really good, told me they'd pass the details to their fraud department, stop my card and send me a new one. The next day I looked at my statement again and spotted another 2 transactions (at the same Tesco and each for around £60) that must have gone through before they stopped the card. Another phone call to the bank and they were added to the fraud list. So effectively I was out of pocket by £360 by someone who'd managed to copy my debit card details.
Thing is, I'm ultra-cautious with my debit card. If I'm not sure about it I'll use my credit card (for the time delay effect I mentioned above) so it's a mystery to me how they managed to skim it (which I'm assuming is what they did). Plus, I thought Chip & Pin was supposed to stop all this sort of thing. So much for that.
Luckily, my bank refunded me the money with no questions a couple of days later, so kudos to them! But for all those nay-sayers who say worrying about card skimming is just a lie spread by the banks to make you scared and that it can never happen to you, it most certainly can. If it can happen to me, it can happen to anyone.
I wonder if they bought anything nice from Tesco. Maybe some of those tasty flapjacks. Flapjacks are nice!